Revolutionize Your Diet
BY MARILEE NELSON
Just as plants and flowers that are deprived water and nutrient-rich soil will droop, becoming dry, unhealthy, and brittle, so also will people that do not get the nourishment they need. But, when watered and fed, plants that are almost dead can be restored, producing beautiful leaves and flowers.
Provided with the nutrition they need, people that have serious disease, are nutrient deprived or malnourished can become vibrant, positive, and energized, restoring beautiful skin, hair and eyes.
Radical diet change is in order when there is serious disease or you are determined to “just do it!” If in critical condition, rapid dietary shifts can save your life. Otherwise, it is sometimes better to gradually make changes since extreme diet change can lead to uncomfortable detoxification symptoms as the body starts ridding itself of long-held chemicals. But some people immediately have a greater sense of well-being, more energy, and deeper sleep.
1. Upgrade your diet: replace unhealthy foods with quality choices.
The following recommendations are based on a broad, sweeping dietary scope that includes animal foods, fish, dairy, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. (There are specific medicinal diets such as raw food diets, Macrobiotic diet, Maker’s diet, Hallelujah diet, Blood Type diet, Zone Diet, etc. which all have a place for temporary medicinal use for specific conditions.) If this feels overwhelming, choose to take on one recommendation at a time.
Replace unpurified water with clean, quality water – If you are drinking tap or unpurified water, stop. Good, quality water cleanses and hydrates the body. Without it, toxins circulate around the body and are deposited instead of eliminated.
Replace animal/dairy products with organic, grass-fed meat, poultry and dairy – This is imperative for hormone regulation as the estrogenic properties of the hormones, pesticides and chemicals damage the hormonal balance of men and women. Animals are given hormones as well as medications that affect human reproductive function and hormone balance. They are also treated with antibiotics that are passed along to us when we eat them. Pesticides used on the animal’s food and in their environment are absorbed, stored in their tissues, and passed on to the human consumers. This one step can help a great deal with PMS, hormone related difficulties, and menopause.
Replace bad fats with good fats – First of all, avoid fried foods.
(Partially) Hydrogenated oils, fade fats (like Olestra), canola oil, margarine, and shortening and the trans-fatty acids that they create disrupt the metabolism and wreck havoc on the body, especially liver.
Eat organic, unrefined plant- and animal-based fats and oils. Good fats contain essential fatty acids (EFAs) that have many benefits. They can boost immune function, fight inflammatory conditions, improve hormone function (alleviate PMS and fibrocystic breast disease), speed up metabolism and regulate nerve impulses as well as improve brain function. (Low fat/no fat diets are not healthy except for some conditions where a temporary medicinal diet is in order.)
For cooking, use coconut oil, olive oil, butter and ghee (organic clarified butter).
For dressings, use olive oil, flax oil (never heat), rice bran oil and sesame oil.
Eat avocados and fresh, organic nuts and seeds to obtain oils from whole foods. For enhanced digestibility, see “Soaking Nuts and Seeds” and for more detailed information, see Sally Fallon’s book, “Nourishing Traditions“.
EPA and DHA, found in cold water fish such as salmon, trout, mackerel, and sardines, help counter inflammatory conditions, improve thyroid function and boost metabolism. Eat these fish several times a week.
Replace processed flours with unprocessed whole grain and sprouted flours – Use organic whole grains such as rice, millet, amaranth, buckwheat, kamut, spelt, wheat, oats, quinoa, and pastas made from these products. Grains and flour should be prepared properly to enhance their digestibility.
Sprouted breads are wonderful and the easiest to digest. Alvarado Street Sourdough, Ezekiel 4:9 and Essene (aka, Manna) Breads are available at health food stores and some conventional grocery stores. Manna is also found at www.goldminenaturalfoods.com.
When trying to heal excess mucus or phlegm, lung and throat congestion, intestinal difficulties, stomach upset, and especially constipation, flour products of any kind are not recommended. The gluten in whole wheat and other grains can aggravate inflammatory response in some people. It can be worth a trial of avoiding gluten-containing grains if you suffer from intestinal disorders or inflammatory conditions.
Also, some blood types are more sensitive to certain grains. Look into the work of Dr. Peter J. D’Adamo, The Geno Type Diet, and his book, “Live Right for Your Type”, especially if you have any health issues.
Replace non-organic vegetables and fruits with organic produce – Plants that have been sprayed with pesticides take the chemicals up through the roots and the pesticide is incorporated in the food. They are toxic to the liver and are endocrine disruptors that make us all more susceptible to reproductive disorders and hormone-based cancers.
Always clean fresh produce to remove any viruses, bacteria, and parasites that might be present. You can use Branch Basics to clean your fruits and vegetables.
When conventional produce is your only option, you should “detoxify” your produce by cleaing it with Branch Basics.
Replace conventional salt with quality salt – The body needs good quality salt; in fact, unrefined salt is vital to health. Today’s “low salt/no salt” dietary recommendations to reduce high blood pressure and decrease the chance of heart disease and stroke are based on our liberal use of conventional salt. Conventional salt is not a healthy choice. Morton’s salt is a refined food that contains sodium chloride, sugar (dextrose), iodide and an anti-caking agent. Unrefined sea salt, on the other hand, has a wide range of vital minerals including potassium and magnesium that actually help balance blood pressure and protect the body from storke and heart disease. Adding the right kind of salt t your diet is an easy change that can reap many benefits.
Use in moderation
Add to beans and grans for better digestion
Pink Salt (can use raw, too!)
“Masu” Sea Salt from Natural Import Company comes in a glass jar
“Si” salt from www.goldminenaturalfoods.com or Whole Foods
Celtic sea salt and Lima sea salt available at health food stores
We do not recommend Hain Sea Salt
As a condiment:
Replace refined/artificial sweeteners with natural ones – Refined white sugar, high fructose corn syrup, cane sugar, artificial sweeteners, etc. are devastating to the immune system and make you more vulnerable to viruses, bacteria and infection.
The body needs the sweet taste, so satisfy it with sweet fruits and vegetables like yams, carrots, parsnips, cooked onions and orange squashes like butternut, acorn and kabocha.
Use healthy sweeteners like honey, maple syrup birch sugar and concentrated stevia with moderation. Three Branches is no longer recommending agave nectar as a sweetener.
Replace artificial drinks with real beverages – Drinks sweetened with sugar, high fructose corn syrups, cane juice, artificial sweeteners, etc. deplete the body of minerals, may contain excitotoxins that damage the brain and can be addictive.
Choose freshly juiced fruits and vegetables, organic teas, and organic beverages sweetened with honey, maple syrup or stevia.
Eat dried fruits that do not have any sulfur dioxide
Eat beans – Try lentils (especially red!), aduki beans, pinto beans, navy beans, black-eyed peas, anasazi beans, black-eyed peas, etc.
Eat fresh, organic nuts and seeds
2. Upgrade your nutrient intake through supplementation
The addition of just the two supplements below will be an enhancement to your diet. Note that they are derived from whole foods and contain no synthetic ingredients so consider them a food.
Greens Mix Capsules or Greens Mix Powder: High in easy-to-assimilate minerals (high in calcium and magnesium). Take 6 caps or 1 Tbsp powder with breakfast, lunch, or dinner. If mineral deficient, add up to 18 a day (6 at breakfast, lunch, and dinner) or 2 T. breakfast, lunch, and dinner if mineral deficient.
Cod Liver Oil: Rich in Vitamin D which helps in the assimilation of calcium. Especially important in the winter when sun exposure is down. Take 4 capsules with a protein meal.
3. Add a green superfood
This one addition can dramatically improve your health. Green Superfoods give the body a break because they require no energy for digestion. If you are new to Green Superfoods, we recommend capsule rather than powder form at first.
Some people like to rotate between the following to add variety to the diet:
Sweet Wheat: The king of the chlorophyll grasses, live wheatgrass energizes and cleanses the body. It helps detoxify by binding with carcinogenic toxins, removing heavy metals and rejuvenating the liver. Sprouted wheatgrass is not a problem for those that are gluten intolerant. Sweet Wheat is full of live enzymes which are highly effective free radical removers and assist with cellular renewal. Take 1-2 capsules 30 minutes before breakfast or with breakfast.
Greens Mix Capsules or Greens Mix Powder: Economical! Made from air-dried, beyond-organic cereal grasses, without pesticides or chemicals. Contains a broad array of fully bio-available, naturally-occurring minerals, especially calcium and magnesium that helps keep the body alkaline. Cereal grasses are a rich source of chlorophyll, which helps purify and build blood. Contains phytonutrients and antioxidants with more vitamin C than oranges, more calcium than milk, more iron than spinach and more beta-carotene than carrots. This is an excellent intracellular DNA repair agent, restoring and rejuvenating damaged DNA. If you are new to green superfoods, Three Branches suggests starting with Greens Mix Pills. Take 3 – 6 capsules, 30 minutes before or with breakfast.
Chlorella: Chlorella contains twice the chlorophyll and nucleic acids as spirulina, but contains a little less protein and a fraction of the beta-carotene. It has the Chlorella Growth Factor (CGF), which is not found in other green foods. This makes chlorella useful for improving growth patterns in children, maintaining health in old age, healing injuries, and initiating growth where it has been stunted from disease or degeneration. It is helpful with blood sugar disorders, immune deficiencies, reducing cholesterol, binding heavy metals, pesticides, and PCB’S, and many other problems. Start with 2 at breakfast.
Blue-Green Algae: Supports the brain, memory, and nervous system and is helpful for ADD/ADHD. It stimulates the opening of neural pathways and is used in treating neurostimulant addictions (cocaine, amphetamines, etc.) Start with 1-3 with breakfast.
4. Exercise to enhance nutrient uptake.